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Life Itself

The Best Films of 2014

The Best Films of 2014

It seems you’re supposed to open your end-of-year favorite films list with an assessment of the movie year as a whole, but I’ve never really been interested in that. Good, bad, or somewhere in between—I have no idea what I’d say about 2014 other than I love the 20 films I’m writing about today and […]

Let’s Talk About 2014’s Awesome Documentaries

Let’s Talk About 2014’s Awesome Documentaries

“This has been a banner year for documentary filmmaking.” Fans of the genre—myself included—have been saying that on a yearly basis for a while, it seems, but I’d say it’s never been truer than it is in 2014. For the first time in my life as a critic, there’s a decent chance my top ten […]

FYC 2014: Magnolia Films and Magnet Releasing

FYC 2014: Magnolia Films and Magnet Releasing

We’re approaching the end of the year, and I’ll be using these FYC posts to share as many thoughts as I can about 2014’s crop of movies. And while I, like most others, might be considering these films for categories like Best Picture, Best Actor, and Best Screenplay, I’m going a little more creative. First […]

The Best Movies of 2014 So Far

The Best Movies of 2014 So Far

We’re here, finally, on the cusp of an exciting fall movie season, and I’m looking back and a weird-ass year so far. Not bad, per se, just…weird. I rated a lot of movies 3.5 stars or better. I thought my annual trip to the Tribeca Film Festival was as fruitful as its ever been. Yet […]

2015 Oscar Predictions: First Guesses Before Fall Fests

2015 Oscar Predictions: First Guesses Before Fall Fests

It’s 2015 Oscar predictions time, so let’s dig the prognosticator’s hat out of the attic, dust it off, and take a look at the landscape of the 2015 Oscar race. If I’m being honest, though, I almost didn’t want to get involved with 2015 Oscar predictions at all. Last year’s Oscar season and the nonsense […]

Life Itself Review

Life Itself Review

RATING: (4 STARS) “A film like Hoop Dreams is what the movies are for. It takes us, shakes us, and make us think in new ways about the world around us. It gives us the impression of having touched life itself.” —Roger Ebert, 1994 There’s a really clever reflexiveness at play with the last two […]

2014 Summer Movie Preview: Part 2

2014 Summer Movie Preview: Part 2

I can’t remember a summer—hell, I can’t remember any period of time—during which a crop of indies was so far and away better/more promising than its blockbuster counterpart. My 10 most-anticipated major Hollywood motion pictures list included no honorable mentions, and if I’m being honest, I’m not extremely excited about a few items I actually […]

10 Documentaries to Watch From Sundance 2014

10 Documentaries to Watch From Sundance 2014

Over at Sound on Sight, I wrote about the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and ten of the many promising documentaries that debuted there. Among them are Steve James’ Life Itself (about the late Roger Ebert), The Case Against 8 (about the legal fight against California’s infamous anti-gay-marragie initiative), and Mitt (about Romney’s six-year-long fight for […]